Meet the Representative

Find out more about the UNICEF Representative in Zambia, Ms. Noala Skinner.

UNICEF Representative Noala Skinner speaking at an event

Noala Skinner is the UNICEF Representative in the Republic of Zambia, based in the capital Lusaka. In this position, she is responsible for planning, coordination and evaluation of a broad range of UNICEF programmes, both developmental and humanitarian, benefiting the status of children and women in Zambia. 

Prior to her appointment as UNICEF Representative to Zambia, Ms. Noala Skinner served the Director of UNICEF’s Partnership Office for Relations with the EU Institutions. She led UNICEF’s strategic engagement and partnership with the European Union institutions – notably the European Commission, European Parliament and the  EU Council bodies. In Brussels, Ms Skinner was also responsible for spearheading UNICEF’s political advocacy, resource mobilization and contribution management.

From August 2011 to July 2015, Ms. Skinner served as UNICEF Representative to Rwanda. In this capacity, she was responsible for the planning, implementation and management of a wide ranging country programme of cooperation – covering Child Survival and Development (Health, Nutrition and WASH); Early Childhood Development; Education; Child Protection; HIV and AIDS; and Social Policy and Research.  She also served as UNICEF’s first Representative to Montenegro after the country gained independence, leading the strategic repositioning of UNICEF’s presence in the country, focusing on Child Rights, Child Care Reform, Justice for Children and Social Inclusion, and heading the Office from August 2007 to August 2011.

From 2004 to 2007, Ms. Skinner served as Chief of Education with UNICEF in Hanoi, Vietnam, where she was responsible for providing direction and overall management to the planning, implementation, monitoring, evaluation and reporting on early childhood development, child friendly primary education, and adolescent development and participation. 

From 2001 to 2004, Ms. Skinner served as an Education Specialist in UNICEF Headquarters in New York. In this capacity, she was responsible for the knowledge-building function in girls' education. From 2000 to 2001, Ms. Skinner served as Assistant Project Officer, Education with UNICEF in Pristina, Kosovo, where she was involved in system design and policy formulation at the central and municipal levels as well as the introduction of child friendly schools into Kosovo.

Ms. Skinner joined UNICEF as a consultant in Geneva in 1998, where she liaised with UNICEF National Committees on advocacy and social mobilisation in support of basic education, and in the Regional Office for Central and Eastern Europe and CIS where she provided technical assistance on humanitarian and development programming, and HIV and AIDS and Human Security.  

Prior to joining UNICEF, from 1994-1998 Ms. Skinner was based at the Centre for History and Economics, King’s College, Cambridge, where she worked as a Research Associate with Common Security Forum (CSF) a network of academics and policymakers, with institutional bases in Cambridge and Harvard Universities, coordinating CSF Research Programmes on Children and Security and Landmines and Security.

Ms. Skinner is a national of the United Kingdom. In 1993, she obtained her Bachelor of Arts degree in History from Queens' College, University of Cambridge. In 1994, she obtained her Master’s degree in Diplomacy and International Relations from Lancaster University in the United Kingdom. She is married and has two sons.